HELLO EVERYONE! It has been way too long since I last wrote. A LOT has happened since my previous post and I hope to never go this long without writing again! I know I know, you have heard this before. But I really want to try to continue to carry through with these goals because I find that blogging, for me, is actually quite therapeutic! And I could use some extra coping skills and therapy right about now 🙂
So, for the New Year, I want to try to blog more without holding myself with the expectation that I NEED to do it constantly…does that make sense? Probably not! Let me try to explain it a little better. Blogging helps me, and I (hope) it helps others just as much as it helps me. However there is a fine line between focusing too much on the blog and making sure that I keep up with it. I find that if I tell myself I need to blog ‘X’ amount of times for the week, I really struggle and it doesn’t become as fun anymore. BUT, if I make a point to blog whenever I feel inspired or just want to write, then that is awesome. To be honest, the reason for staying away from blogging so long is that I just wasn’t feeling inspired. Anxiety and depression have been all consuming for the past 1 – 2 months, and some days it is hard for me to just get out of bed and do the things that I need to do, let alone try and come up with something to blog about.
Anyways, now that my rant about not blogging is over with, I want to get to the heart of this post, and that is about ENDING the stigma associated with mental illness, and even chronic physical illness, too. On my spoonie Instagram page, I opened up a little bit to my followers in a post today about myself and some of the issues I deal with. I don’t know if you are on IG, but I know these posts from #endingthestigma were pretty much blowing up my feed. So, I decided to join in on the fun… Because it is crucial that we END the stigma surrounding mental health, and also end the stigma among chronic illness, particularly in young people! These illnesses are real. They are not made up, and they are not ‘just in people’s heads’ (unless you are looking at it pretty literally because mental illness does mean that it’s mental, meaning the head…duh). Mental illness affects so many people, but it often is not talked about because people are afraid of being judged, looked at differently, or even like they owe an explanation for why they feel the way they feel. It is looked at as a very personal matter. And there is nothing wrong with it being personal if that is how one wants it. We all have a right to our privacy! But, sometimes it helps to talk about it and not keep it such a secret. Secrets can be unhealthy, and we need to make sure we are acting in accordance with what most benefits our health and wellbeing. For those who have been following me from the beginning, and for any new followers, I am about to get real about some of my struggles. Key word being some, because I am not a complete open book on this blog to be perfectly honest. But I am as honest as I can be in disclosing personal information, because I am actually a private person believe it or not. But some things need to be talked about. Some issues need to be pushed because they are misunderstood and misrepresented. Below is the post that I made on my IG page today…
I am not perfect by any means, no one is. But I need to continue to remind myself that given my circumstances and the cards that I have been dealt with, I am brave. I am strong. I am a fighter. We all are brave, and strong. If you are still here you are fighting like hell. If it is not a mental illness, it is a physical illness. If it is not a physical illness, it is a loss. If it is not a loss, it is job stress. Do you see where I am going with this? We ALL have our battles that we need to fight. Sure, they present themselves differently in everybody, but we all struggle and suffer. Some things are easier to talk about than others. This being said, just because something isn’t as easy to discuss, does NOT mean that we should not discuss it. Mental illness and chronic physical illness should not be topics to be avoided. We need to confront these issues head on. We need to talk about them. Talking about them could save a life. I know when people open up to me about their struggles, such as a mental illness or a physical illness, I feel less alone. My first inclination when someone opens up to me is to offer words of encouragement and advice from my OWN experience. I want to help others. I hope I can help others. The support in the Instagram community for chronic illness warriors and mental illness battlers is do great. It puts me at ease on hard days and serves as a source of comfort and sense of belonging. We all need to feel like we belong. And THIS is why it is important to talk about these difficult issues. Because we are not alone in our struggles.
On that note, I’m going off to bed. I hope this post was able to speak to some of you. If it helps only one person, that is good enough.
Have a good night and stay strong loves.